While travelling through Europe in his trailer, capturing European culture through the lens of his camera, Lars van den Brink came to the following conclusion: it is only in moving slowly and seeing Europe’s nature, culture and the architecture of its many countries flow into one another, that one can see Europe as a whole. Van den Brink sees Europe as more than a straightforward economic and political collaboration between 28 countries.
In his new photography series, Ruins of Europe, he presents European history through the imagery of fifteen ruins: extraordinary places that bring to the surface European history and culture, connecting the past with the present and at the same time reminding us that the present will, one day, become the past. At a time when Europe appears to be splitting at the seams, Lars van den Brink focuses on connections: a shared European history and culture.
A kite festival in Russia, miniature bullfighting in the Basque country, a performance by a brass band in Tirol. In the context of a previous project, ‘A happy day in Europe’, Van den Brink created a photographic record of what it is Europeans do in their free time. This made for a cheerful collection of images portraying people in a variety of curious activities. Following up on the busy hubbub of Europe’s people, Lars van den Brink now focuses on the quiet ruins of Europe and their rich histories.